The Executive Branch of Government in the US 

The Executive Branch of Government in the US 

 

                             
Executive Branch, the branch of the United States government devoted to administering and enforcing the country’s laws. The country’s laws are written by the legislative branch (Congress), approved by the president of the United States, and subject to interpretation by the judicial branch. The executive branch has 15 major departments and scores of separate agencies.
Executive branch agencies, departments, and other entities are all bureaucracies—large organizations composed of clerks, administrators, and other workers. Executive branch bureaucracies disperse funds, manage programs, provide services, and enforce regulations and laws. They also make rules that have the force of law behind them. Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution of the United States makes the president the head of the executive branch. In addition, laws give the president specific powers over a wide range of matters.
It is not all executive decisions or policies which are developed by the president alone. Presidents have come to rely on a large staff based in the White House to handle a wide range of administrative tasks from policymaking to speechwriting.
The Constitution gives practically no direction on the organization of the executive branch. It does mention "executive departments," which became the basis for the cabinet. While relying primarily on the White House staff for advice, a president turns to members of the cabinet for advice in their areas of expertise.

 

 


The Executive Office of the President
The Executive Office of the President (EOP) comprises four agencies that advise the president in key policy areas: the White House Office, the National Security Council, the Council of Economic Advisors, and the Office of Management and Budget.
The National Security Council (NSC), organized in 1947, deals with domestic, foreign, and military policies affecting security issues. By law, the NSC is composed of the president, vice president, secretary of defense, and secretary of state. Representatives of the intelligence and defense communities are also members. The president's national security advisor supervises the council's activities.
The Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) created in 1946 to provide the president with information on economic policy. It is best known for predicting national economic trends.
The enormously complex task of preparing the federal budget for submission to Congress falls to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Originally established in the Treasury Department as the Bureau of the Budget, the OMB has had its powers expanded considerably since 1970. It is involved in drafting the president's legislative program and evaluating how effectively federal agencies use their appropriations.

The Executive Office of the President also includes the Council on Environmental Quality, the Office of National AIDS Policy, the Office of National Drug Policy, and the Office of the United States Trade Representative. The president is free to establish new agencies within the EOP. George W. Bush created the Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives and the USA Freedom Corps.
The cabinet
Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) was originally part of the Department of Labor but was transferred to the Justice Department in 1940. The Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (1953) was renamed Health and Human Services in 1979 when a separate Department of Education was established. In addition to the secretaries of the departments, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, the OMB director, and other officials participate in the cabinet. Following are the cabinet departments as they have existed since 1989:
Unlike the White House staff positions or ambassadorships, cabinet appointments are not usually based on a personal relationship with the president or given as a reward. A president is more likely to base the selections on reputation, expertise, and ability to manage a large bureaucracy. Appointments are also an opportunity for a president to show that the administration represents a broad cross section of the country by including ethnic and racial minorities and women in the cabinet.